Review - Warpaint by J J Maya

Title: Warpaint

Author: J J Maya

Publisher: Books Go Social

Release Date: 3rd April 2020

Source: NetGalley
Readers are falling in love with Warpaint!
Scottish Makeup Artist Willow meets dashing New Yorker, Rick, and marries him after a whirlwind romance. But her new life in NYC is far from the perfect fresh start she imagined. 
Ignoring the warnings of her colleagues on the beauty hall floor, Willow headed off into the sunset with Rick...but his “Manhattan” loft is a bedsit in Queens and his ex, Isabella, appears to be in residence. 
Scorned Isabella alerts the authorities of a suspected “Green Card Marriage,” setting off a chain reaction with dramatic consequences. 

Now, faced with the threat of deportation and her marriage over before it had the chance to begin, will Willow find the courage to stay in New York and make all her makeup artistry dreams come true?

As a proud Scot I had to know what would make a fellow countryman up and leave her life in our beautiful country.  Love, dear reader, the usual culprit!

Make up artist Willow leaves behind her beauty counter in Glasgow, she has fallen in love with handsome New Yorker Rick, he appears to have it all, good looks, charm, money and a loft in Manhattan.  Despite warnings from her friends and colleagues she finds herself 6 weeks later married and on a plane to NYC to start her new married life.

What could go wrong?  Marrying a man she has only just met and doesn’t know anything about?  His not quite ex with a baby on board, oh and that loft in Manhattan is a crappy apartment in Queens.  Willow’s dreams of taking on the Big Apple are falling apart before she has even got started.

With her immigration paperwork going through the motions, returning home is not an option so she puts on her lippy, hits the streets and finds herself a job working in a luxury department store, here she finds unlikely friends and allies along with her husbands baby mama working along side her.

Her dreams are shattering around her but she knuckles down and starts doing what she does best, make people feel good about themselves, impressing her boss in the process but there is always a spanner in the works and she finds herself at her lowest point with Immigration breathing down her neck.

Can she make a new life in New York?

I really enjoyed this book, I love a strong Scottish female character and despite her many hurdles, Willow got on with it even when she found herself down to her last dollars.  I did feel like giving her a telling off - “Why the hell are you marrying a man you’ve just met?!!!” - but I know that true love works in mysterious ways, I know a couple who got engaged after just two weeks and are still married 40 odd years later.  I think I’m just a little impressed that she had the balls to just go for it, to make that jump and to see what happens, she had nothing to lose.

I’d have like to hear a wee bit more about Rick and Willow’s whirlwind romance, would there have been more signs that he wasn’t being entirely truthful.

It was a good fun read, the perfect antidote to these uncertain times.

Thanks to NetGalley for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.



  1. I like the sound of this, thanks for sharing your thoughts

  2. I get so irritated at the amount of Scottish steriotypes in books that I run away screaming when I see a Scottish character!


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